Sick Joke: Joe Lieberman in the Dark

Glenn Greenwald scores again with this warts-and-nothing-else portrait of Joe Lieberman, "Profile of a Neoconservative Warrior." Greenwald plucks scarily revealing bits from a New Yorker article about Sofagunner Joe, particularly his shaky-knees fear of prodigiously breeding Muslims, (which echoes, precisely, the kind of sinister twaddle you would have heard from many Germans and Poles about the "Eastern Jews" threatening to overwhelm "civilization"), and his reliance for solid facts and figures on this threat from…Mark Steyn, the dribble-flecked peddler of he-man war porn.

I must confess something here. I honestly thought that Joe Lieberman was a cynical operator through and through, on the Dick Cheney model. Sure, he had the same bees in his bonnet about power, privilege and domination that Dick and Rummy and the boys have, but I thought that Lieberman, like that those twin terrors from Nixon's nursery, could see through his own bullshit, and knew that he was laying down a line of twaddle for the rubes while covertly pushing the Dominationist agenda.

I didn't really comprehend, until now, how genuinely ignorant, dull-witted and emotionally stunted he is. It was not only his embrace of a gormless dribble-flecker as a mentor on world-historical trends – and the fact that he even brags about getting his worldview from an agit-prop windbag – but even more the magazine's glimpse of Lieberman unplugged, at leisure, at a time when there were no cameras on him and (so Joe thought) no journalists around. Greenwald zeroes in on this passage from the story by Jeffrey Goldberg:

Lieberman likes expressions of American power. A few years ago, I was in a movie theatre in Washington when I noticed Lieberman and his wife, Hadassah, a few seats down. The film was “Behind Enemy Lines,” in which Owen Wilson plays a U.S. pilot shot down in Bosnia. Whenever the American military scored an onscreen hit, Lieberman pumped his fist and said, “Yeah!” and “All right!”

I can scarcely conceive of any grown man reacting in such a way to a war movie, much less a United States senator. It not only boggles the mind, it turns the stomach to think that a mentality like this holds a position of power in a nation capable of unleashing so much destruction. I know, I know, this is horrible naivete; I know full well that the historical record of this and many other nations offers a superfluity of examples of witless ignorance at the top. And I have seen for myself, close up, the most stunted and adolescent minds wielding power at various levels of governmental and institutional hierarchy. Still, the fact that we all know that human beings commit unspeakable atrocities every day doesn't prevent us from being shocked or outraged at some new instance of this common proclivity. Likewise, this picture of a silly, stupid little man getting his rocks off on comely Hollywood stars killing people "for America" retains its power to shock and sicken.

Check out Greenwald for more on this sick joke – if you can stomach it.